ABC Orders An AGENTS OF SHIELD Spin-Off Show

But they're keeping its plot a secret!

Agents of SHIELD has really improved this year, improved to a point where instead of episodes piling up three or four deep on my DVR I actually watch them like on Thursday or something. It's not quite at 'gotta see it live!' status, but it's inching towards that. There have been a lot of things that have helped the show improve, and better writing and more intriguing, morally ambiguous storytelling are among them. The appearance of more super-powered characters helps as well, even if Deathlok still looks like a shitty 1998 off-brand superhero movie character. And even if the show has spent the last six episodes steadfastly refusing to say the word 'Inhuman,' despite central character Skye being one. 

The show had a spin-off already (sort of), Agent Carter, which was better in every way but also still deeply flawed. While SHIELD has some really awful casting, Agent Carter was well-cast across the board and the period piece element made the show feel fresh, as opposed to Agents of Helicarrier Hallways. But Carter never managed to build up the proper momentum it needed, especially as a limited series. It went along in fits and starts; SHiELD season two has better momentum, with each episode rocketing ahead, even in weeks when they're just laying pipe to get to a bigger moment. 

But now it's going to get another spin-off, title unknown. It's also not being set up in the main series - ie, there's no upcoming episode that's a backdoor pilot - but The Hollywood Reporter says the plot should become clear based on the rest of this season of SHIELD. Which, to me, means some sort of Inhumans/superhero series, now that the universe has expanded to include more of that stuff. Which I would like to see, and which makes sense when you look at how well superheroes are doing for the CW - SHIELD should have always had that fun element of tons of cameos and characters. 

Of course Agents of SHIELD isn't exactly a powerhouse, and it hasn't even been renewed for a third season. We also don't know the future of Agent Carter. It would be interesting if ABC decided to do a thing where every season of SHIELD breaks for mid-season hiatus and a new limited series takes its place, but this is all up in the air for now. Still, because this stuff is valuable to Disney I expect to see SHIELD come back for season three and the spin-off join - and crossover with - it. I just hope that someone at Marvel TV or ABC decides to give one of these shows a decent budget at some point.